We are excited and proud to report that the district enrollment of Western Plains USD 106 has increased substantially, according to the official enrollment numbers taken by the state on September 21st.
Enrollment numbers are a hot topic in the area and state, as we all know that a school cannot function without an adequate number of students, and in turn the funding received for those students. This is an especially hot topic for rural schools, such as our own.
On September 21, the state of Kansas conducted head count day, when each student throughout the state is accounted for at the district they attend. The schools then receive funding based on how many students are counted.
Enrollment at USD 106 showed leaps. The largest increase was within the elementary category. The amount of pre-school students increased by 43%, with K-5 increasing by 23%. The high school saw a 16% increase in students. The junior high numbers were the only group that decreased, due to several families moving out of the area. This led to a total drop of eight students in the junior high, which is a significant drop that will be felt over the next few years as those grades transition into high school.
Despite the junior high drop, Superintendent Jeff Jones is excited and optimistic about the numbers. “We are really encouraged with our enrollment growth, especially in our elementary schools with our younger students. I think there are many families in the area that are recognizing the outstanding academic oppportunities that exist here at Western Plains in a very nurturing one-on-one learning environment with virtually zero bullying and the normal discipline issues that exist in the average school district,” commented Jones.
As a district, USD 106 has worked very hard to provide geographically convenient education for students district-wide, as well as providing a safe learning environment with all the activities and organizations provided by a larger school. We are very encouraged by our enrollment growth and see a very bright future ahead for USD 106.